Everyone in Tokyo is waiting for the typhoon now. It’s called Wipha and is supposed to come during the night and reach its peak in the morning. If it’s severe (and it’s supposed to be) we don’t have to go to work in the morning, but can come in the afternoon instead, our editor told us before we went home today.
Sorry for the bad quality of the above photos, I shot them with my phone on my way home. But maybe it can give you a glimpse of Tokyo right now.
I’ve experienced a typhoon once before, in Tokyo in July 2012 (photo here).
Update: I’ts next day now. I slept very badly because one of the metal shutters banged against the window in the strong wind. And the house was shaking, though I didn’t mind that. It was still windy in the morning, but no rain, so I went to work. I probably should have waited a couple of hours, because all trains were delayed because of the typhoon. My usual morning train takes 22 minutes station to station. This morning it took 55 minutes (20 minutes waiting and then a slow and extremely congested train ride). Maybe it was this situation the editor meant when he said we could come in after lunch. The office was emptier than usual when I arrived, maybe only half the usual people here. And all of them greeted me very happily.
We get a lot of press releases to the editorial offices. Most of them arrive by fax (!), but this one came in the mail, for natural reasons. Nissin, the company behind Cup Noodle and other food labels, has changed the business cards for all employees to resemble the company’s products. The photos show what it looks like. I think it’s not only a fun idea but also a great way to market the products. I guess the cards can also serve as a nice ice-breaker when you meet someone for the first time and exchange business cards. (Now you can also see the view from my desk.)
I’ve slept in a capsule twice, in Kyoto (October 2011) and Morioka (January 2013), but I’ve actually never bought the little capsules that you get from vending machines in Japan. Tonight I met with a mangaka in Kichijouji, and afterwards we went to the local Animate store. But they had just closed (kind as they were, they said: “if you know what you want, you can buy it quickly”, despite it was five past eight). While waiting for the elevator I spotted this capsule machine with Kuroko’s Basket nendroids. I put in 200 yen in the slot and out came a capsule containing one out of six possible characters…
(Yes, I got Kuruko himself, the main character and my favorite, obviously.)
I finally found it: A blue bathroom stool, which is apparently called a ハユール (hayuuru) after the company that is most famous for making them, Hayur. I searched in several shops. One had them, but not in the color I wanted. Which is blue. After having seen these little plastic chairs both in animes and at every onsen or sauna I’ve been to, I have concluded that they are as central to Japanese society as the tea ceremony.
As I wrote in September, both 1980′s anime Ranma½ and the more recent Ichigo 100% contain a blue hayuuru in plastic:
And now my bathroom does as well!
Of course I didn’t do any work today. Once I got off at Akihabara I was swallowed by all the usual shops. Time just disappears there. So I’ll have to do the work tomorrow instead. I’m very happy though that Kuroko from Kuroko’s Basket has been made into an action figure.
Two of the things I bought:
Since the anime premiered just a few days ago, there’s a lot of advertising for it. I’ve almost finished volume 29, the first manga I read entirely in Japanese.
I was planning to work at the coworking space in Gotanda today, but it was closed.
So now I’m heading for Akihabara instead before going home and working from there.